DBS Wants to Spark Off Your Dreams


Have you watched the mini-series, Sparks, by DBS on YouTube? I happened to catch a trailer of it while watching other YouTube videos and decided to watch all the first 5 episodes as I was curious as to why a large banking corporation would want to do a mini-series of videos on YouTube. What story were they trying to tell?

It did change my perspective of the banking industry knowing that there’s also a personal touch to this industry as well. It made me realised that it isn’t just all about transactions, investments and money; it is also about life transformations and fulfilment of dreams. To me, it simply speaks of hope. Who knows that behind all these bank transactions and figures are a team of bankers who went the extra mile and even supported their customers to achieve their dreams? I hope I am right to say that there are good souls out there in the banking industry who is not fuelled by monetary benefits but by their passion for improving the lives of others. It is indeed refreshing for a bank to step up and say, ‘we help spark off others’ dreams’.


In a recent media event organised by DBS at DBS Asia X (The Sandcrawler),  I had a clearer picture of how DBS tries to create ‘meaningful sparks’ especially to Social enterprises in Singapore. We also viewed the sixth episode of the Sparks mini-series which will be launched on March 17. This final episode explores how social enterprise, Zaya Learning Lab, uses technology and innovation to educate children in low-income communities. All these episodes were inspired by true stories which were all evidence on how DBS is changing the status quo to go beyond and above in this competitive banking industry.


Photo Credit: DBS Singapore

During the event, DBS also invited a panel of remarkable social innovators as they discussed the challenges and opportunities faced when SMEs digitalise and innovate for scale and impact. It provided me with great insights of how DBS plays a role in pushing forth Social Entreprises and changing the entrepreneurial landscape here in Singapore. The team of panellists includes Dr Alex Lin, Head of Ecosystem Development for SG Innovate Pte Ltd and DBS BusinessClass Advisor, Neil D’Souza, Founder of Zaya Learning Labs, David Pong, CEO of WateROAM and Gillian Tee, Co-Founder and CEO of Homage.

Photo credit: DBS Singapore

Each of them gave valuable insights on the challenges faced by SMEs and how social enterprises help to make a social impact in today’s world. David Pong, for instance, talked about how they encourage the villagers to become microentrepreneurship by providing them with portable filtration systems which they could filter the river water and sell them within the local community to earn a living for themselves. This could help empower them and extending this social impact within their country. It is truly very meaningful and I believe this is also what keeps social entrepreneurs motivated to push forth their ideas.

They also shared about the two challenges faced by SMEs which includes high manufacturing costs and lack of access to facilities which would help them build their businesses. But I guess all these problems could be overcome with perseverance and passion. These innovators whom I met that evening must be so serious and passionate in doing this so as to be willing to make sacrifices for their time and effort in order to help others. Inspiring! This discussion is sufficient to spark a light in me. And for all your aspiring social entrepreneurs out there, don’t give up as the world is waiting for you!

Many thanks to DBS for the lovely binge box too! It sparked an appetite for me to venture out and take risks. Who knows? I might take the challenge and become a social entrepreneur myself one day.


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